Regarding the flooding and power outages at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport (TTIA) caused by torrential rains, Vice Premier Lin Hsi-yao stated in an interview today that currently the top priority is to determine the causes of this incident and rectify any failings in the shortest possible time. Moreover, the airport must speedily return to normal operations and safeguard the rights and interests of departing and arriving passengers.
Vice Premier Lin was assigned to inspect the airport’s condition by Premier Lin Chuan, who today had to deliver an administrative report and receive interpellation at the Legislature.
The preliminary understanding of the cause of the incident is that water overflowed from an old H-shaped drainage pipe within the airport, the vice premier pointed out. He has instructed the Executive Yuan’s Public Construction Commission (PCC) to form an ad hoc panel to complete in-depth investigation within three days. In addition, the PCC must provide suggestions for short-term improvements, such as setting up catchment areas and increasing pumping facilities.
Although the water in the airport has been cleaned up, only 80 percent of power has been restored so far, Vice Premier Lin said. Taoyuan International Airport Corp. Ltd. (TIAC), which is responsible for managing TTIA, has told contractors and Taiwan Power Co. to reinstate full power as soon as possible. The Executive Yuan has demanded full electricity supply be resumed within two days.
TTIA concerns the nation’s image, and no such incident should ever occur again, the vice premier admonished. Improvement of the drainage systems and integration of their interfaces both within and without the airport shall be reviewed and rectified by TIAC, while the Taoyuan City Government shall invite relevant agencies for examination and deliberation, with the Water Resources Agency of the Ministry of Economic Affairs providing full support.
Vice Premier Lin particularly instructed TIAC to properly handle travelers’ complaints. If any passengers have suffered damages, the company must track the Airline Operators’ Committee’s follow-up processes and ensure the passengers’ rights and interests are duly protected.
This incident demonstrated that TIAC’s flood-prevention preparations are insufficient and the company must make improvements, the vice premier stated. The Executive Yuan will also demand that henceforth all relevant government agencies, organizations, schools and local governments strengthen flood prevention prior to the flood season, which begins every year in May.